Back to school… Almost

Posted by Karen - August 25th, 2018

Where we live, school always begins the Tuesday after Labour Day. This means there is still ONE… MORE… RUDDY… STINKING WEEK until Miranda and her brother Owen are finally out of my hair. I am a work-from-home parent, so having two teenagers underfoot all summer has been from H-E-double-hockeysticks.

Ha ha, OK, I am obviously exaggerating! It’s actually been a pretty good summer, but it’s definitely getting old.

Let’s see… Things started out for Miranda with her doing a “grade 7/8 transition” program through the month of July. High school begins in grade 8 around here, which means that this fall, Miranda will be going from her sleepy little elementary school of 300 or so kids to a school with 1500 students. YIKES. That’s one heckuva change, which is why the transition program was a great thing. Basically, the kids in the program (which is not compulsory, just by personal choice) went to the high school for half a day, 5 days per week, and had a bit of an introduction to each of the academic courses they’ll be taking in grade 8. They had the opportunity to get to know the school, look around, figure things out, and generally get comfortable with it all. Miranda and a couple of her friends took the course, and I think they got quite a bit out of it.

Miranda visiting with one of the office dogs on a visit with me to work.

Miranda and one of the office dogs on a visit with me to work.

Just as the transition program was drawing to a close, the kids and I took a 4-day trip to Toronto in connection with some research into fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP). Without going into details about the research, which I am not supposed to do, I will just say that it was a good trip and we all enjoyed it. Owen especially – while Miranda was doing her bit for the cause, he took his 16-year-old self to the Hockey Hall of Fame, where he saw all manner of hockey stuff and got selfies with the Stanley Cup (yes, he was in heaven). Luckily Miranda didn’t lose out on all the fun – there was a fair bit of down time, so we were able to do some shopping and sightseeing as well. Super bonus too, I got to spend a little bit of time (not enough) with fellow FOP moms and friends Lucie and Debbie, who were visiting there as well.

Shopping at Eaton's Centre.

Shopping at Eaton’s Centre.

We were no sooner back from Toronto when it was time for summer vacation. We drove to Calgary, where I grew up and my family still lives, and we all had a great time visiting with my parents, siblings, nieces, and nephew. We also did a very successful Walk for FOP fundraiser in conjunction with the Degenhardt family of Saskatchewan, and collectively we raised almost $25,000 for the Canadian FOP Network. Woo hoo!

So far so good. But then, it was back to Vancouver, and the boredom started to set in for Miranda. She’s had a whole lot of nothing going on for the past 3 weeks, with yet 1 more week to go. She’s spent a lot of time at the local shopping malls and the library, not to mention busing around. The result is that Miranda is ITCHING to get to school. She’s always enjoyed it, but this year has the added excitement of starting high school, and doing a whole lot of cool things you don’t get to do when you’re younger.

Bored, and hanging with kitty Pepper.

Is she anxious about it at all? Yeah. For sure. For one thing, there’s the whole “5x-as-many-students-as-you’re-used-to” factor. For another, Miranda will be using her power wheelchair full-time in school for the first time ever, and that’s bound to attract a certain amount of attention from the students who don’t know her (almost all of them).  She worries mainly about her ability to make friends. Will the other kids like her? Will it be hard to meet people? And so forth. Interestingly, she’s not much worried at all about how hard the school work will be… I think she’s pretty confident about that.

So yes, the anxiety is there, but it’s a lesser factor than the excitement she has about starting this new adventure. She’s really, truly looking forward to it. I think it will be good for her, too – Miranda is the kind of kid who does best with a routine, so once things settle in, she should be in her element. Plus, she plans to join at least 3 school clubs, plus continuing with Girl Guides of Canada as a Pathfinder and as a junior leader of a Sparks unit, so she is going to be one busy girl.

Now, if we can just make it through this one last week…

2 Responses to “Back to school… Almost”

  1. Heidi Hunter says:

    Love the hair! Enjoy all of the new experiences!

  2. Suzanne Hollywood says:

    Always love your blog
    Tell M her hair is fabulous ❤️

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